The United States of Tara: A Thanks From the International Society for the Study of Trauma & Dissociation

Dispite hilarious distortions of a serious “mental illness” that is painful for those believed to be suffering from it, the foremost authority for research, study, and dissemination of information – the ISST-D still thanks Steven Speilberg. Speilberg is appreciated for bringing public awareness just after they state that this show is largely a misrepresentation. Richard Kluft, MD a member of the ISST-D is one of the show’s consultants.

Is Richard Kluft displaying a conflict of interest, supporting educational information about MPD/DID, shooting for fame, or doing what he can to collect a hefty paycheck from Speilberg? You decide.


Thank You!

“The International Society for the Study of Trauma and Dissociation is grateful to Showtime, Inc., Steven Spielberg, Kate Capshaw, screenwriter Diablo Cody, actress Toni Collette, and the supporting cast and producers of The United States of Tara for their portrayal of the complicated, confusing, and sometimes desperate life lived below the visible surface of an everyday person with dissociative identity disorder. As Richard P. Kluft, M.D. noted in the special educational video produced by Showtime on their website (and available on this website, above), only a small percentage of people with dissociative identity disorder have the classical presentation of obvious switching from one personality state to another. Most people with this disorder go to work, raise families, and struggle to live their lives while healing from the painful emotional wounds of their earlier years. Too often, public discussion of dissociation and dissociative disorders is sensationalized. This is a public Thank You to Showtime, and all involved, for increasing interest about an important psychological disorder. We hope this increased interest results in improved treatments, and better lives for our patients, their families, and our communities!”

“The views of Showtime Inc. and the production team of the United States of Tara, are  their own and do not necessarily reflect the views of ISSTD or its members.  The ISSTD website provides accurate, current scientific information about Dissociative Identity Disorder.”

Retrieved 3/15/11. ISST-D Thanks Steven Speilberg

Los Angeles, California, U.S.A: Psychologist, Nirbhay Singh, accused of Jepordizing mental health cpare

Los Angeles, CA, USA June 17, 2012

Nirbhay Singh, a psychologist and consultant who, according to the LA Times, “led the troubled effort to overhaul California’s public” has recently  raised “concerns about cronyism and the quality of his work” which directly impacts the quality of patient care and general welfare.

Following allegations, Singh abruptly resigned from his California job on the west coast of the U.S. after violence in the hospitals continued and it was exposed that contracts were repeated awarded to Singh’s friends and family.

This investigation focuses on documentation in question as he obtained additional contracts to work on the Federal level in the states of Connecticut in North East USA, Washington, D.C. the capital of the U.S. and the state of Georgia on the southern coast of eastern U.S.

Singh maintains that under his direction patient care improved, but did it? or is he making claims to keep himself from further investigation and possible prosecution?

The Los Angeles Times claims: “consultants.. have built lucrative careers offering expertise on all sides of the reform process. In their revolving roles as federal experts, state advisers and independent monitors, they are able to recommend one another or evaluate each others work — sometimes with the direct approval of Justice Department lawyers. The department has no conflict-of-interest policy governing such consultants.

Related stories:

Reporters at the LA Times: By Lee Romney and John Hoeffel,

Retrieved 06/17/12.  Full Story: LA Times

Updated 10–07-14.

What We Know and What We Need to Learn About the Treatment of Dissociative Disorders

Journal of Trauma & Dissociation

Bethany L. Brand PhDa*

Volume 13, Issue 4, 2012. pages 387-396.

Available online: 31 May 2012


In this editorial, I briefly review research design issues and the current treatment research for dissociative disorders (DD), discuss the limitations and challenges of conducting treatment studies for patients with DD, and conclude by describing what I see as the first wave and second wave in the field of dissociation.

Insurers and federally funded programs are increasingly requiring that treatment be empirically supported in order for treatment to be reimbursed. For example, psychoanalysis will no longer be reimbursed in The Netherlands because of what is perceived as a lack of empirical support.

Other countries have also established standards about the treatments that have sufficient empirical support to merit government payment. I believe it is only a matter of time before it is common for patients with DD to be required to seek out empirically supported treatment if they want treatment to be reimbursed.

We need to financially support treatment studies in order to develop a more solid empirical basis for the treatment of DD.



Insurance companies are placing more requirements on empirically established therapies (those based on clinical observation only) used to treat dissociative identity disorder/multiple personalities. Insurers want evidence that the psychotherapy is effective probably because payment for services seems endless for this psychiatric diagnosis.

This article, unfortunately, seems to be more of a warning signal than a call for mental health providers to be responsible and provide mental health consumers with psychotherapy that has a record of working.

Since the American Psychiatric Association evidently has no intention of making such requirements of psychotherapy or those who practice it for a living, the policing of this powerful and influential Industry is left to the courts – usually when a patient and/or their families sue the provider – and/or to the Insurance Industry.

If the Insurance industry keeps losing money by providing coverage for therapies with no proven effectiveness yet requires years and years and sometimes decades of treatment, we can expect to see coverage limited or discontinued and a shift to proven effective treatment to increase.

Below are some links to aid in your understanding of the difference between scientific evidence & methods and that of empirical research and evidence based only on clinical-observation.

In short, empirical evidence means observation only. Scientific evidence must be observable And measurable using strictly established methods that evaluate a theory. It takes ideas therapists have – like the link between childhood sexual abuse and multiple personalities – to the next step beyond simple observation or empirical evidence.

Mental health care consumers using only empirical evidence (observation) – like that made by a psychotherapist during sessions to evaluate and prove the effectiveness of their therapy –  are buying therapy based on someone’s opinion, not science.


What is empirical evidence?

  • Scientifically-based research from fields such as psychology, sociology, economics, and neuroscience, and especially from research in educational settings
  • Empirical data on performance used to compare, evaluate, and monitor progress

United States Department of Education

Empirical research is a way of gaining knowledge by means of direct and indirect observation or experience.

Empirical evidence (the record of one’s direct observations or experiences) can be analyzed quantitatively or qualitatively. Through quantifying the evidence or making sense of it in qualitative form, a researcher can answer empirical questions, which should be clearly defined and answerable with the evidence collected (usually called data).

Research design varies by field and by the question being investigated. Many researchers combine qualitative and quantitative forms of analysis to better answer questions which cannot be studied in laboratory settings, particularly in the social sciences and in education.

In some fields, quantitative research may begin with a research question (e.g., “Does listening to vocal music during the learning of a word list have an effect on later memory for these words?”) which is tested through experimentation in a lab. Usually, a researcher has a certain theory regarding the topic under investigation.

Based on this theory some statements, or hypotheses, will be proposed (e.g., “Listening to vocal music has a negative effect on learning a word list.”). From these hypotheses predictions about specific events are derived (e.g., “People who study a word list while listening to vocal music will remember fewer words on a later memory test than people who study a word list in silence.”). These predictions can then be tested with a suitable experiment.

Depending on the outcomes of the experiment, the theory on which the hypotheses and predictions were based will be supported or not. Retrieved 06/01/12.

Scientific Method – definition Wikipedia Retrieved 06/01/12.

To be termed scientific, a method of inquiry must be based on empirical and measurable evidence subject to specific principles of reasoning.[2] The Oxford English Dictionary says that scientific method is: “a method or procedure that has characterized natural science since the 17th century, consisting in systematic observation, measurement, and experiment, and the formulation, testing, and modification of hypotheses.

Healthy Food Choices for Alleviating Symptoms of Multiple Personality Disorder

Although the title of this article seems overly simplistic, it addresses nutrition which is sorely lacking among people diagnosed and treated for dissociative identity disorder/multiple personalities largely due to a frequent inability to care for oneself.

I wish it was this easy.  Since potent psychiatric drugs are usually ordered to alleviate symptoms, food is unlikely to be the focus on increasing health. If nutrition increases, perhaps many patients will feel better and look at their treatment differently.


Multiple Personality Disorder

June 24th, 2012

 What one eats is a daily activity that literally determines a body’s makeup. The body affects the mind, and as multiple personality disorder is a disease of the mind, nutrition is a good place to look for a cure. This article will provide tips for improving nutrition as well as general multiple personality disorder information.

…When the body is starved for nutrients it is an uphill battle to cure the mind.

I… Try making a vegetable smoothie or cooking vegetables with meat to  get started. For multiple personality disorder, eating dark-green leafy vegetables will invigorate the body with iron and other lesser found nutrients.

Some great fruits and vegetables are

  • broccoli
  • carrots
  • kiwi
  • blackberries

… “Curing multiple personality disorder requires a holistic approach. Neglecting the body neglects the mind.

This article should not be viewed as expert medical advice. Please consult your healthcare provider for treatment.”

Retrieved 06/28/12.

Alternate Explanations for Dissociative Symptoms

I don’t agree or disagree with this article but am pleased that researchers are looking into alternative reasons for the development of dissociative disorders other than childhood sexual abuse.



Gen Hosp Psychiatry. 2014 Mar 19. pii: S0163-8343(14)00073-5. doi: 10.1016/j.genhosppsych.2014.03.010. [Epub ahead of print]

Dissociative disorder due to Graves’ hyperthyroidism: a case report.

Mizutani K1, Nishimura K2, Ichihara A3, Ishigooka J1. Tokyo Women’s Medical University, Tokyo, Japan.


We report the case of a 20-year-old Japanese woman with no psychiatric history with apparent dissociative symptoms. These consisted of amnesia for episodes of shoplifting behaviors and a suicide attempt, developing together with an exacerbation of Graves’ hyperthyroidism. Patients with Graves’ disease frequently manifest various psychiatric disorders; however, very few reports have described dissociative disorder due to this disease. Along with other possible causes, for example, encephalopathy associated with autoimmune thyroid disease, clinicians should be aware of this possibility.


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